The Worshipful the Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Mohammed Hanif officially opened a redeveloped boarding house at Old Swinford Hospital on Friday 21 October.
Foster House, which opened to students in September, will form a major part of OSH’s new Year 11-13 initiative to prepare students to move onto the next phase of their lives, whether it be university, apprenticeships or the work place. Students will have their own space, helping to develop greater responsibility and independence.
The house is one of the School’s oldest boarding houses and has been modernised to create single and twin en-suite rooms for 60 Year 13 students. A lightweight atrium has been constructed to create a central common room with links through the building to a study area and kitchen. The internal refurbishment and conversion give the house a modern and open look on the inside, whilst retaining its historic façade.
Commenting on this new development at OSH, Headmaster Paul Kilbride said “Research has shown that a person’s work or study environment can have an impact on their performance. This recently refurbished house is bright and modern. There are spaces for individual and group study, as well as recreational areas, making it an ideal environment for students in their final year at OSH.”
I am pleased to see that this project, which has taken several months of planning and involved numerous internal and external stakeholders, has been finished to such a high standard.”
To commemorate the opening of the new boarding house, The Mayor and Mayoress, Councillor Mohammed Hanif and Mrs Zabeda Khanam also planted an apple tree in the grounds of the School. The Cox’s Orange Pippin is the 128th tree to be planted as part of the Boarding Schools’ (BSA) ‘Boarding Orchard’ which aims to have the largest orchard by distance, in the UK. Over the past two years 125 boarding schools have planted trees in their grounds. The trees symbolise ‘the tree of knowledge’ and demonstrate each school’s commitment to growth and caring for the environment.